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Saturday, March 11, 2023

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Micah 7:14-15, 18-20
Psalm 103:1-4, 9-12
Luke 15:1-3, 11-32

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“...after swallowing up your property...” —Luke 15:30, JB

No matter how much any human being has harmed us, no matter how much someone has swallowed up our property, desires, plans, money, hopes, or dreams, no human being has harmed us as much as we have hurt the heavenly Father by our sins. We have “swallowed up” the gifts, talents, and treasure God has bestowed on us. Yes, we may have made a return to the Lord for all He has given to us (Ps 116:12). But even if we have laid down our life for the Lord, we have still squandered His gifts and “swallowed up His property” in some way.

The Pharisees had supposedly dedicated their lives to the Lord. Yet Jesus charged them with straining out the “gnats” of God’s holy precepts and swallowing the “camel” of their man-made traditions (see Mt 23:24). In the same way, we are sinners and have done harm to our Father, swallowing up much that He has given us without bearing the expected fruit. Yet God is merciful and gracious (Ps 103:8). He delights “in clemency” (Mi 7:18). He rejoices greatly when we repent and ask His forgiveness (Lk 15:7, 10, 32).

So, let us repent of swallowing up God’s property. We may have stuffed ourselves by swallowing the goods of this world, indulging our own lusts, meanwhile starving our souls (Prv 13:19). Let us rather swallow up what God puts into our mouth: the Holy Eucharist (Jn 6:51ff) and the scroll of the Word of God (Ez 3:3; Rv 10:9).

Prayer:  Father, may I swallow up Your Word and Eucharist daily. Use me for Your Kingdom, and use me up.

Promise:  “Who is there like You, the God Who removes guilt and pardons sin?” —Mi 7:18

Praise:  Two women prayed together in Eucharistic adoration for Esther to quit smoking. Unbeknownst to them, at that very hour, Esther decided to throw away her cigarettes and never smoked again.

Reference:  (This teaching was submitted by a member of our editorial team.)

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